Jump directly to the Content

Surprised by Addiction

These ministers faced their compulsions—and stayed in ministry.

For Richard Yasinski the depression began soon after he turned 40.

The Springfield, Missouri, coffeehouse church he had planted four years earlier didn't seem to be growing beyond the few dozen tattooed and pierced teenagers who had been around since the beginning. Yasinski began comparing himself with other pastors his age that he viewed as more successful, which made him feel like a failure.

In addition to his career woes, Yasinski had medical issues. A diagnosis of ulcerative colitis resulted in surgery to remove his colon. His doctor had prescribed a narcotic to ease the pain, but Yasinski didn't give any thought to the label warning that the drug shouldn't be taken by those susceptible to alcohol addiction. Sure, his parents had been alcoholics, and he had been a heavy drinker in high school. But upon accepting Jesus at 18, Yasinski experienced deliverance from his vices, and he had sensed a call to ministry. He had successfully avoided alcohol.

But now the pain medication—along ...

May/June
Support Our Work

Subscribe to CT for less than $4.25/month

Homepage Subscription Panel

Read These Next

Related
The Ministry of Absence
The Ministry of Absence
Why Henri Nouwen warned pastors about becoming "too available."
From the Magazine
Charisma and Its Companions
Charisma and Its Companions
Church movements need magnetic leaders. But the best leaders need more than charm.
Editor's Pick
What Christians Miss When They Dismiss Imagination
What Christians Miss When They Dismiss Imagination
Understanding God and our world needs more than bare reason and experience.
close